Six simple ways to avoid the Great Resignation

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Avoiding the great resignation

One of the most used phrases of 2021 and 2022 has been the Great Resignation. Despite some people thinking that this is a myth (myself included… a crisis will always escalate an existing trend), there is still a huge concern about the unmet need for talent. This has caused a big power shift inside organisations, with candidates holding all the cards and multiple options on the table on the back of the pandemic.

If the pandemic has taught us anything it’s that we love creating a brand for something – hybrid working, the Great Resignation, pivoting, Zoom-fatigue! But it’s created a few that are starting to cause bigger issues for organisations now that a new rhythm of business is being discovered.

When it comes to the Great Resignation, we have to remember that people leave roles, work relationships end, values change and people relocate – it’s the natural ebb and flow of organisations. The pandemic has simply accelerated some of those decisions and given people the power to make choices that better suit their lives.

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That said, when valuable talent leaves an organisation, it does have an impact. Not only have you lost valuable internal experience, but the time and resources needed in the recruitment process are huge. Nobody wants to see great talent leave if they can help it; we need to make sure we’re creating a culture every day where people feel valued, loyal and engaged.  There are six things to think about if you’re concerned about people leaving your organisation:

1. Say thank you – research tells us that what people really want at work is to be appreciated; it’s a small thing but it has a big impact.
2. Find out why people are leaving – never assume it’s for one reason; you could have some toxic behaviours or cultural issues to explore.
3. Invest in the communication skills of your managers – research tells us time and time again this is one little thing that will make a big difference.
4. Give managers time to manage – don’t fill up their diaries or expect them to have the same time for tasks as before; management requires time. Give them space.
5. Listen to people – some of the best ideas are from the frontline; give people a voice and find out what could change to improve things.
6. Look at your processes – for recruitment, promotion and development of your people; if they aren’t fair, inclusive and accessible they need investment to change.

High employee turnover is something we often delve into when we work through The Field Model with clients. It’s a symptom of chaos, so we will often get involved in diagnosing the root cause to help fix things. The list above is a great starting point if this is an area of chaos for you or your team – don’t be put off by the brand of the Great Resignation – there is a lot you can do!

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